FAMILY & PARENTING

Orphaned Boy, 11, Learns His Former ‘Host Family’ Has Secretly Decided To Adopt Him

by Amy Paige
Amy is the Director of Trending Content at LittleThings. After graduating from Florida State University with a creative writing degree, she moved straight to New York City to pursue a career in the arts. She loves discovering and sharing viral videos, watching movies with her Muppet-like poodle mix named Cali, and doing the robot whenever possible.

An 11-year-old boy named Sebastian was living in Colombia with no biological family to call his own, and no prospects on the horizon.

Then, in the summer of 2018, Sebastian traveled to the United States to temporarily live with a family in California. It was all set up by Kidsave’s Summer Miracles program.

The moment that Amanda and JoBen Barkey saw Sebastian’s photo on the Kidsave website, they knew he was meant to be a part of their family, and they couldn’t wait to meet him.

For five incredible and life-changing weeks, Sebastian lived with Amanda, JoBen, and their four sons. They spent the entire summer together, creating memories and sightseeing across the country.

The bond was instant and undeniable.

After the program ended, the Barkeys were understandably heartbroken to have to say goodbye to Sebastian. The feeling was mutual.

The little boy flew back to Colombia after finally experiencing the love of a family. He figured it would be a very long time until he’d see them again (if ever).

But what Sebastian didn’t know was that Amanda and JoBen had been planning something in secret — but according to the protocol, they couldn’t tell him, or their kids, what they had up their sleeves.

In the clip below, watch Sebastian’s emotional journey toward finding his forever family.

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